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When I graduated from college I had just moved back from Italy, had 37k dollars in student debt, no idea what I was going to do with my life, and a desire to travel. Unfortunately, I also didn’t know anything about credit.

I’m here to chat with y’all about a sometimes awkward and sensitive subject. Credit Scores.

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You’re probably over there thinking what in the WORLD is this travel blogger doing trying to talk to me about my credit. And you’re right to think that. I’m not qualified to tell you how to raise your credit. But I am qualified to tell you that from my experience, having better credit means I can travel more. It means I have less debt. It’s impossible to drop everything at a moment’s notice and fly halfway across the world when you can’t justify it with your credit card or the credit bureau. I realized that a little later than I would have wished and I want you to figure it out quicker and easier than I did. Without good credit, it’s challenging to live the lifestyle you want.

I completed my degree from the University of Florida and I realized what I wanted more than anything else was to travel. I wanted to see everything everywhere. But I didn’t really have the money to do that, so I did what anyone would do, and started working. 6 months after graduating, I didn’t have a car. I decided I needed to get one of those. I saved up a *very small* downpayment and found a good deal on a Jeep Renegade and drove 2 hours with my mom to Orlando to purchase it then and there.

In retrospect, no one prepared me for what I was about to get into. Had I talked to a credit counseling company like CreditRepair.Com beforehand, I would have known in order to take out a loan for a car I either needed 5 years of credit history or 5 lines of credit. The financer at the dealership told me this. I counted all my lines up….my student loans and my credit card should count for those 5 right? Nope.

Student loans don’t count at all. Apparently that 37k dollars being paid on time was basically useless unless I missed a payment.

Being only 21 I didn’t have quite a long enough history – even though I got my first credit card at 18. What did this mean for me? A 6% interest rate on my car instead of a 2.5%. They told me to take out more credit cards and refinance in 6 months. Of course, I took out the cards, but then this hurt my score so I didn’t refinance because I didn’t think I would get a better rate anymore. I was stuck with more credit cards and an interest rate I didn’t believe I could lower.

I felt like I was digging myself in a deeper and deeper hole with someone pouring dirt in on top of me. More credit cards, more debt, more payments, and not living the lifestyle I wanted.

I was still traveling, but not where and when I wanted. I thought of talking to someone, anyone, but sharing your credit history with people is embarrassing. At the time I didn’t know of services like CreditRepair.Com, who help people like me achieve the credit score of your dreams. I needed to quickly realize my credit score wasn’t set in stone. I finally realized I had to take action because my credit won’t fix itself. If I had called CreditRepair.Com for a free consultation and used their services, I would probably have achieved my current credit score at a much more rapid pace.

Determined, I set to work paying things off and raising my score.

I talked to my dad for advice and started tracking my credit. Each time my score went up 10 points I felt like I had won a small victory.

Fast forward two years from my college graduation. My credit score is up 200 points higher than it was when I graduated! I have paid off a substantial amount of my credit card debt. I have fully paid off 1 student loan and another is right around the corner. One way I have achieved this is by continually paying more than the minimum amount due on each payment. Even if it’s only an extra $50, that goes a long way. Things that would have made my life easier doing this along the way include a personalized online dashboard, a credit tracker, payment reminders and credit and bureau interactions, all of which are provided by CreditRepair.Com.

Bad credit could be costing you your dreams. It was definitely costing me mine. You should know your credit. Repair it. Live the life you want to. The trusted leaders of CreditRepair.Com have served over 500,000 clients. I wish I had known about their services when I felt like I was in trouble with my credit. I’m so glad I have my credit in a good place right now. After my consultation with CreditRepair.Com, I am really looking forward to pushing my credit over the next hump from “really good” to “great” credit.